Industry Press Releases

MTV Video Music Awards Return To NYC

Thursday, Apr 21, 2016

Mayor Bill de Blasio, Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment Commissioner Julie Menin, and NYC & Company President & CEO Fred Dixon today joined MTV in announcing that the 2016 "MTV Video Music Awards" will return to New York City, airing live from Madison Square Garden for the first time in the show's 33-year history on Sunday, August 28, 2016. Commissioner Menin was on hand for the announcement at the MTV Upfronts presentation in Midtown Manhattan on Thursday evening.

"We are excited that MTV will bring the VMAs back to its original home of New York City," said Mayor Bill de Blasio. "From the red carpet to the accolades to the performances - and everything in between - the VMAs are an incredible showcase for so many talented artists. It also goes without saying that hosting the awards in our City means a boost to our small businesses and restaurants and more jobs for the thousands of crew members who work to bring the show into homes around the world."

"The VMAs at MSG is a New York story too good to resist," said Sean Atkins, President of MTV. "The VMA's deliver some of pop culture's most defining moments and we're grateful to our New York home and Madison Square Garden for rolling out the red carpet for what is sure to be the biggest night in music. You can be assured we are going put on a show that celebrates the city and that creates yet another seminal moment in music history at this iconic venue."

"From its top-class performers to its world-renowned venues, NYC reflects everything the entertainment industry has to offer – and makes us a natural fit to host the VMAs," said Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment Commissioner Julie Menin. "And beyond the entertainment value of the show itself, the financial benefit of this event on small businesses is significant. We are grateful to have the VMAs back in New York this year, as it presents huge opportunities for shops, restaurants, and retailers across the City."

The economic impact of the VMAs in New York City is tremendous, between the significant number of out-of-town visitors expected, the jobs created by the show, and the millions of dollars MTV expects to directly spend with local small businesses and vendors. Having the VMAs and events like it in New York City are not just opportunities for world-class entertainment, but significant revenue-generating events that ultimately benefit all New Yorkers.

In celebration of the VMAs in NYC, the Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME) and MTV are partnering for the first time on a new video contest for New Yorkers ages 16 and over. Contestants will be asked to create a 30-second video answering the question: "If you could take your favorite VMA artist anywhere in NYC, where would it be and why?" Up to five winners will have the opportunity to attend the VMAs and to walk the red carpet along with some of today's biggest stars, and their videos will be shared on some of NYC's official social media channels. Up to 75 runners-up will also receive an opportunity to visit MTV, learn about its programming and take a tour of the network's studios, courtesy of Viacom. Full contest details will be made available in June.

The 2016 VMAs will mark the 16th time the music awards show has aired from New York City, including most recently the 2013 MTV VMAs at Brooklyn's Barclays Center, which featured world-renowned recording artists including Justin Timberlake, Miley Cyrus, and Robin Thicke. New York is home to MTV's corporate headquarters and is the original home of the VMAs, with the first-ever show taking place in 1984 at Radio City Music Hall.

The MTV VMA show stands as the most Tweeted non-sports television program of all time with 21.4 million tweets, according to Nielsen Social. In 2015, the show generated more than 73 million views across all platforms in its first 72 hours.

"We are delighted to welcome the MTV Music Video Awards back to New York City. As a global hub for creativity, entertainment and culture, New York City is the ideal host for this event," said Fred Dixon, President and CEO of NYC & Company. "As we have seen from the 2015 VMAs, this event is a dynamic media engine which will only be enhanced by the global spotlight NYC attracts. Visitors and event organizers will be reminded that this is the most creative, experiential destination in the world."

"We are thrilled to welcome the "MTV Video Music Awards" to the World's Most Famous Arena for the first time," said David O'Connor, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Madison Square Garden Company. "Madison Square Garden has been known throughout its history for inspiring the greatest performers, sports icons to break records and make history, and we have no doubt that the MTV VMAs - so celebrated for its exciting and unexpected mix of music and entertainment - will add an unforgettable chapter to that unparalleled legacy."

The VMAs will benefit from Madison Square Garden's recent three-year, top-to-bottom transformation, which significantly enhances the experience of everyone who walks through the Garden's doors. Highlights include a breathtaking Chase Square entrance; new arena seating with improved sightlines; expanded concourses with city views; and food offerings from some of the world's best chefs; new clubs and suites; and a state-of-the-art GardenVision center-hung multimedia display.

About the NYC Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment:
The Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment is comprised of two divisions: the Office of Film, Theatre, and Broadcasting, and NYC Media. The Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting serves as a one-stop shop for the entertainment industry and promotes New York City as a thriving center of creativity, issuing permits for productions filming on public property, and facilitating production throughout the five boroughs. NYC Media is the City's official broadcast network and media production group, with programming that informs, educates, and entertains New Yorkers about the City's diverse people, neighborhoods, services, attractions, and activities. You can also follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

About NYC & Company:
NYC & Company is the official destination marketing organization for the City of New York, dedicated to maximizing travel and tourism opportunities throughout the five boroughs, building economic prosperity and spreading the positive image of New York City worldwide. For more information, visit

About MTV:
MTV is the world's premier youth entertainment brand. With a global reach of more than a half-billion households, MTV is the cultural home of the millennial generation, music fans and artists, and a pioneer in creating innovative programming for young people. MTV reflects and creates pop culture with its Emmy®, Grammy® and Peabody® award-winning content built around compelling storytelling, music discovery and activism across TV, online and mobile. MTV's sibling networks MTV2 and mtvU each deliver unparalleled customized content for young males, music fans and college students, and its online hub is a leading destination for music, news and pop culture. MTV is a unit of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA), one of the world's leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms. For more information, go to

About The Madison Square Garden Company:
The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG) is a world leader in live sports and entertainment with a portfolio of legendary sports teams, exclusive entertainment productions and celebrated venues.  MSG Sports owns and operates some of the most widely recognized sports franchises: the New York Knicks (NBA), the New York Rangers (NHL) and the New York Liberty (WNBA), along with two development league teams -- the Westchester Knicks (NBADL) and the Hartford Wolf Pack (AHL).  MSG Sports also presents a broad array of world-class sporting events, including: professional boxing, college basketball, tennis, bull riding and e-gaming events.  MSG Entertainment features exclusive, original productions that include the Radio City Christmas Spectacular and New York Spectacular Starring The Radio City Rockettes.  MSG Entertainment also presents or hosts a wide variety of live entertainment offerings, including concerts, family shows and special events, in the Company's diverse collection of iconic venues. These venues are: New York's Madison Square Garden, The Theater at Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall and Beacon Theatre; the Forum in Inglewood, California; The Chicago Theatre; and the Wang Theatre in Boston, MA.  More information is available at


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